What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close
With rendition switcher

Transcript

Saad Mohseni: In Afghanistan, most households have one television set, so it’s general entertainment.  They're mostly general entertainment channels and slight sort of slightly female skewed, but programs appeal basically to families.  So in a place like Afghanistan people gather around the television set a bit like in the 1950s in the US.  It’s the thing to do to have dinner, watch television, discuss the programs and then go to sleep.  And people really have nothing much else to do besides watch television.  People can’t go to restaurants.  They can’t go to the theater.  Even going to relatives’ homes in some parts of the country is just out of the question.  So television becomes a sort of focal point in a household.  And also I think people just can’t afford to do things besides watch television.  I mean, I think even in the US, for example, sort of the poorer, the less affluent suburbs penetration of cable is much higher than say the Upper East Side of New York because people have other things to do on the Upper East Side of New York.

So for us the important thing is to keep it fairly general.  Now of course the market will become fragmented as people have access to more television sets, to internet and so forth, and we’re already recognizing that, so we’ve launched a 24 hours news channel, for example, in Afghanistan.  As we see things we'll probably have a sports channel.  We’ll probably have a children’s channel in the years ahead.

In Iran it’s a little bit different.  Television penetration is very high.  It’s something like 80% of the population has access to satellite.  A lot of households have more than one television set and so although most of the programs we do declare that they are sort of family types of soap operas and programs, but it’s more female skewed than our channel in Afghanistan.  That’s what the advertisers like, and we believe that the bulk of the viewers in a place like Iran are women.  And so it purely depends on the market.  Afghanistan is very—it’s a very unique case, sort of frozen in time.  

We had the opportunity to go in there and obviously we’re seeing things resemble, as I said, the US in the 1950s, but the change, the rate of change is sort of very much accelerated.  I mean, Afghanistan will resemble the western world vis-à-vis media probably in the next five to ten years, so what was achieved in the west over a 50, 60 year period we’ll see happen in Afghanistan over a very short period of time, probably ten years I would say.  

 

Directed / Produced by

Jonathan Fowler & Elizabeth Rodd

 

 

Dancing with the Stars in A...

Newsletter: Share: